Toddling through spring with muddy wellies

Our pre-schoolers were back out at Low Barns Nature Reserve in April, enjoying a Muddy Wellies walk and some wildlife spotting.

Last Friday at Low Barns Nature Reserve, the sun was out, the birds were singing and our youngest nature spotters, the 'Muddy Wellies' group, were out looking for wildlife. It was such a joy to watch them notice the bluebells, touching soft dandelions and sticky conker buds, smelling stinky wild garlic and watching buzzing bumblebees looking for a nest site.

We wandered along together, encouraging little ones with the offer of pond dipping, past the coot pond onto the boardwalk and through the swishy reedbeds, where reed warblers sang their scratchy song, proclaiming 'we are back, summer is on its way!'. This little brown bird, singing its heart out, returned last week after flying some 5000km from sub-Saharan Africa, ready to weave its nest here in the reedbeds of Low Barns. It’s such a privilege to have these birds here, and even more so to stand on a boardwalk in the sun with a small group of toddlers listening together to their scratchy song on a sunny April day!   

Muddy wellies walk

Who doesn’t enjoy a pond dip, a peek into a watery world full of tiny, diverse life? We found pond snails, curly ones and pointy ones, cased cadis fly larvae-sneakily hiding in dead grass stems, damselfly larvae, tadpoles, water beetles and much more. And all the while the sun shone, the birds sang and we enjoyed being outside in nature, looking and learning, together.

Spring has well and truly sprung at Low Barns and summer is on the way with more migrants arriving or soon to arrive to nest, including: swallows, sand martins, sedge warblers and later still, swifts.

As COVID restriction allow, we are beginning to plan in more outdoor groups so do keep an eye on the 'What’s On' section of our website. Our monthly groups, Muddy Wellies (pre-schoolers), Wildlife Watch (4-9 years), Nature Rangers (10-13 years) and Young Rangers (14-18 years) will be starting again soon. So if you have young ones who enjoy the outdoors and don't mind a bit of mud then do please book on and come and join us, we can‘t wait to see you again!